The IEA developed and regularly updates a series of global, low-carbon energy technology roadmaps. The IEA is leading the process, under international guidance and in close consultation with government and industry. The overall aim is to advance global development and uptake of key technologies to reach a 50% reduction in energy-related CO2
emissions by 2050. The roadmaps identify priority actions for governments, industry, financial partners and civil society that will advance technology development and uptake to achieve international climate change goals.
Technology Roadmap: Solar Thermal Electricity
Published: 15 September 2014
Concentrating solar plants (CSP) generate solar thermal electricity (STE) while producing no greenhouse gas emissions, so it could be a key technology for mitigating climate change. In addition, the flexibility of CSP plants enhances energy security. Unlike solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies, CSP plants use steam turbines, and thus can provide most needed ancillary services.
Moreover, they can store thermal energy for later conversion to electricity. CSP plants can also be equipped with backup from fossil fuels delivering additional heat to the system. When combined with thermal storage capacity of several hours of full-capacity generation, CSP plants can continue to produce electricity even when clouds block the sun, or after sundown or in early morning when power demand steps up.
Technology Roadmap: Solar Photovoltaic Energy
Published: 15 September 2014
Solar energy is widely available throughout the world and can contribute to reduced dependence on energy imports. As it entails no fuel price risk or constraints, it also improves security of supply. Solar power enhances energy diversity and hedges against price volatility of fossil fuels, thus stabilising costs of electricity generation in the long term.
Solar PV entails no greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions during operation and does not emit other pollutants (such as oxides of sulphur and nitrogen); additionally, it consumes no or little water. As local air pollution and extensive use of fresh water for cooling of thermal power plants are becoming serious concerns in hot or dry regions, these benefits of solar PV become increasingly important.
Technology Roadmap: Solar Heating and Cooling
Published: 9 July 2012
The solar heating and cooling (SHC) roadmap outlines a pathway for solar energy to supply almost one sixth (16.5 EJ) of the world’s total energy use for both heating and cooling by 2050. This would save some 800 megatonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per year; more than the total CO2 emissions in Germany in 2009.
While solar heating and cooling today makes a modest contribution to world energy demand, the roadmap envisages that if concerted action is taken by governments and industry, solar energy could annually produce more than 16% of total final energy use for low temperature heat and nearly 17% for cooling. Given that global energy demand for heat represents almost half of the world’s final energy use – more than the combined global demand for electricity and transport – solar heat can make a significant contribution in both tackling climate change and strengthening energy security.
Technology Roadmap: Wind Energy
Published: 16 October 2013
The IEA Wind Power Technology Roadmap 2013 Edition recognises the very significant progress made since the first edition was published in 2009. The technology continues to improve rapidly, and costs of generation from land-based wind installations continue to fall. Wind power is now being deployed in countries with good resources without any dedicated financial incentives.
The 2013 Edition targets an increased share (15% to 18%) of global electricity to be provided by wind power in 2050, compared to 12% in the original roadmap of 2009. However, increasing levels of low-cost wind still require predictable, supportive regulatory environments and appropriate market designs. The challenges of integrating higher levels of variable wind power into the grid need to be addressed. For offshore wind, much remains to be done to develop appropriate large-scale systems and to reduce costs.
The 2013 Wind Power Roadmap also provides updated analysis on the barriers that exist for the technology and suggests ways to address them, including legal and regulatory recommendations.
Technology Roadmap: Delivering Sustainable Bioenergy
Published: 27 November 2017
Technology Roadmap: How2Guide for Bioenergy
Published: 30 January 2017
Bioenergy is the largest source of renewable energy today, providing heat and electricity, as well as transport fuels. Yet, more so than for other low‑carbon energy technologies, the complex and multi‑faceted supply chains of bioenergy projects call for careful consideration of sustainability issues and well-thought-out regulatory frameworks. These will enable continued bioenergy growth, while contributing to reduced GHG emissions and greater energy security while fostering the agricultural sector.
A concerted effort is needed to accelerate the development and deployment of bioenergy technologies globally. National and regional bioenergy roadmaps can play a key role in assisting decision makers identify pathways that are tailored to local resources and priority actions to overcome economic and non‑economic barriers. This How2Guide for Bioenergy was jointly developed by the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) as a toolbox that can be used for both planning and implementing new bioenergy strategies, or to improve existing ones.
Technology Roadmap: Hydropower
Published: 29 October 2012
Hydropower could double its contribution by 2050, reaching 2,000 GW of global capacity and over 7,000 TWh. This achievement, driven primarily by the quest of clean electricity, could prevent annual emissions of up to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 from fossil-fuel plants. The bulk of this growth would come from large plants in emerging economies and developing countries.
Hydroelectricity’s many advantages include reliability, proven technology, large storage capacity, and very low operating and maintenance costs. Hydropower is highly flexible, a precious asset for electricity network operators, especially given rapid expansion of variable generation from other renewable energy technologies such as wind power and photovoltaics. Many hydropower plants also provide flood control, irrigation, navigation and freshwater supply.
The technology roadmap for Hydropower details action needed from policy makers to allow hydroelectric production to double, and addresses necessary conditions, including resolving environmental issues and gaining public acceptance.
Technology Roadmap: Geothermal Heat and Power
Published: 14 June 2011
The technology roadmap for Geothermal Heat and Power offers a strategic plan to maximise deployment of these energy resources by 2050. It projects that 1,400 TWh of electricity per year could come from geothermal power by 2050, up from 67 TWh at present.
Additionally, geothermal heat (not including ground-source heat pump technology) could contribute 5.8 EJ (1,600 TWh) annually by 2050. In order to reach these targets, policy makers, local authorities and utilities need to be more aware of the variety of geothermal resources available and of their possible applications. This roadmap describes the technological, economic and non-economic barriers facing geothermal deployment, and the steps stakeholders must take to overcome them.
Technology Roadmap: Carbon Capture and Storage in Industrial Applications
Published: 20 September 2011
In sectors such as iron and steel, oil refining, cement and chemicals and petrochemicals, emission can be reduced through efficiency improvements and integration of low carbon energy sources. Crucially, however, carbon capture and storage (CCS) has been identified as the only large-scale mitigation option available that can deliver the additional CO2 emissions reductions that would be necessary to meet the climate goals in 2050.
This roadmap shows that CCS is a key cost-effective option for reducing CO2 emissions in large energy-intensive industries. In fact, much of the promising short-term potential for CCS globally lies not in the power sector but in industrial activities that currently vent highly pure streams of CO2. These activities include hydrogen production for fertilisers or fuel, bioethanol production and natural gas sweetening.
Most studies on the potential application of CCS have focused on the power sector, however, even though all existing operational large-scale demonstrations of CCS are in industrial applications. In the longer-term, half of the global economic deployment for CCS by 2050 is shown to be in industrial applications. In certain sectors CCS is shown to be of particular relevance in developing countries, where it could be a highly cost-competitive emissions abatement option, even in the near term.
Our work on Renewables
- German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier visits IEA headquarters
18 December 2018
- IEA officials visit Samarkand for high-level meetings and policy forums
12 October 2018
Events & workshops
Dec11December 11, 2018 15:30
COP24Variable renewable energy integrationCOP24, Katowice, Poland (German Pavilion)
Dec3December 03, 2018 17:34
High-level EventCOP24 Katowice, Poland
Oct8October 08, 2018 10:44
PublicationRenewables 2018London, UK
Oct2October 02, 2018 16:14
WorkshopInterEnerStat Meeting 2018Paris, France
Aug28August 28, 2018 23:59
Aug28August 28, 2018 08:30
Aug22August 22, 2018 10:20
Statistics: Renewables Information 2018 Paris, France
Jul19July 19, 2018 10:20
Statistics: Renewables Information 2018 OverviewParis, France
Jun20June 20, 2018 11:45
WorkshopSystems Integration Side EventYokohama, Japan
Jun20June 20, 2018 00:00
WorkshopSystems Integration Side Event Yokohama, Japan
Apr24April 24, 2018 10:45
WorkshopEU4Energy Policy Forum on BioenergyVienna, Austria
Mar27March 27, 2018 00:00
WorkshopEnhancing the Impact of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Policies - A joint workshop of the IEA Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Working PartiesFrench Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ministerial Conference Centre, Paris
Mar19March 19, 2018 14:55
WorkshopEnergy Statistics Course March 2018Paris, France
Nov6November 06, 2017 00:00
Jul12July 12, 2017 09:30
WorkshopIdentifying Technology Innovation Needs and Opportunities Under Mission Innovation Challenge n°2: Off-grid Access to Electricity OECD Conference Centre, 2 rue André Pascal, 75016 Paris, France
Mar28March 28, 2017 00:00
Feb7February 07, 2017 00:00
WorkshopIEA Renewable heating and cooling workshopPermanent delegation of Finland to the OECD, Paris
Dec13December 13, 2016 16:14
WorkshopInterEnerStat Meeting Paris, France
Dec12December 12, 2016 16:14
WorkshopG20: Energy End-Use Data and Energy Efficiency Metrics initiativeParis, France
Nov29November 29, 2016 00:00
WorkshopEPRI/IEA Workshop Renewables and Clean Energy for Industries Washington DC, United States
Nov7November 07, 2016 00:00
Oct11October 11, 2016 09:00
WorkshopIEA-ISGAN Workshop: Flexibility in future energy systems UIC-P (Union Internationale des Chemins de Fer/International Union of Railways
Sep8September 08, 2016 09:00
WorkshopIEA Forum on Integrating Energy Efficiency and Renewable EnergyMaison de la culture du Japon, Paris
Jul11July 11, 2016 15:00
Apr29April 29, 2016 15:33
Apr28April 28, 2016 09:00
WorkshopElectricity Security Across BordersParis
Mar14March 14, 2016 00:00
WorkshopRenewable Energy Policies Post - COP21Paris
Mar1March 01, 2016 09:00
WorkshopScaling up Smart Energy SystemsParis
Feb29February 29, 2016 10:15
WorkshopDistributed Energy Resources Workshop 1: New Roles and responsibilities in Smart Distribution NetworksIEA Conference Room 1
Feb29February 29, 2016 09:00
Dec3December 03, 2015 10:00
WorkshopCOP21 IEA Technical Day: Analysis for COP21 and BeyondLe Bourget, Blue Zone, WBCSD-IETA Pavilion
Nov30November 30, 2015 00:00
WorkshopCOP 21 / CMP 11: 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and 11th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Kyoto ProtocolParis
Oct4October 04, 2015 16:37
Sep16September 16, 2015 09:15
WorkshopExpert workshop in support of implementing a wind energy technology roadmap for IndiaNew Delhi, India
Sep14September 14, 2015 16:14
WorkshopInterEnerStat Meeting IEA/Paris
Jul7July 07, 2015 09:00
Workshop2nd ESAP Plenary MeetingIEA, Room 1
Jun15June 15, 2015 09:00
WorkshopSupporting the Deployment of Low-Carbon Technologies in the ETC and SEMED regionsIstanbul, Turkey
May11May 11, 2015 00:00
Mar24March 24, 2015 00:00
Jan15January 15, 2015 09:00
WorkshopRegional Resource AdequacyIEA
Jan14January 14, 2015 09:00
Dec1December 01, 2014 14:22
Workshop20th Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and 10th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP 20/COP MOP 10)Lima, Peru
Nov27November 27, 2014 09:30
Oct17October 17, 2014 09:00
WorkshopBioenergy: Opportunities for Mitigation, Negative Emissions and BECCSChangsha, Hunan Province, China
Sep23September 23, 2014 10:30
WorkshopPolicy Best Practices for Accelerating the Deployment of Low-Carbon Energy and Climate TechnologiesParis, IEA Headquarters
Jul23July 23, 2014 09:30
WorkshopSouth-East Asia Expert Workshop on Biomass resources and Bioenergy potential - How2Guide for Bioenergy Bangkok, Thailand
Jun12June 12, 2014 09:00
WorkshopPlenary Meeting of the Electricity Security Advisory PanelIEA Conference Room 1
Mar25March 25, 2014 00:37
Mar13March 13, 2014 09:00
Dec5December 05, 2013 09:03
WorkshopCCS: Options for Energy Intensive IndustryBeijing, China
Oct7October 07, 2013 09:00
Oct1October 01, 2013 09:30
WorkshopFuture Challenges for Electricity SecurityParis, IEA Headquarters
Jun13June 13, 2013 09:00
WorkshopBio-energy and CCS (BECCS): Options for BrazilUniversity of São Paulo, Brazil
Apr9April 09, 2013 09:00
WorkshopScaling Up Financing to Expand the Renewables PortfolioOECD Conference Centre
Dec4December 04, 2012 09:00
WorkshopInterEnerStat MeetingIEA, Paris
Oct3October 03, 2012 10:50
WorkshopFrom Mediterranean Plans to Renewable Energy Power PlantsRome, Italy
Mar27March 27, 2012 09:00
WorkshopRenewables – Policy and Market Design ChallengesParis, France
Mar19March 19, 2012 09:00
WorkshopSolar energy in Morocco Oriental, training workshopOujda
Jun21June 21, 2011 00:00
WorkshopIEA-OAO "InterRAO EES" Renewable Expert MeetingMoscow
May26May 26, 2011 00:00
WorkshopHydropower Roadmap WorkshopIEA, Paris
Nov29November 29, 2010 14:22
Workshop16th Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and 6th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP 16/COP MOP 6)Cancun, Mexico
Nov23November 23, 2010 14:38
WorkshopSustainable Hydropower Conference in Rio Rio de Janeiro
Sep15September 15, 2010 00:00
WorkshopSustainable feedstock supply for bioenergy and biofuelsIEA Headquarters
Apr26April 26, 2010 00:00
Nov2November 02, 2009 09:00
WorkshopFrom Roadmaps to Implementation IEA, Paris
Oct22October 22, 2009 09:00
Workshop4th InterEnerStat MeetingIEA, Paris
Oct28October 28, 2008 09:00
Workshop3rd InterEnerstat MeetingIEA, Paris
Sep22September 22, 2008 09:00
Workshop8th Annual IEA-IETA-EPRI Greenhouse Gas Emission Trading WorkshopIEA, Paris
Dec3December 03, 2007 14:22
Workshop13th Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and 3rd Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Kyoto Protocol (COP 13/COP MOP 3)Bali